Dominica is a small beautiful island in the Caribbean known better for its lush ecosystem than its infrastructure and technology developments. With a population of about 70000 people there are many challenges as well as unique opportunities for this developing island state. The mountainous topography of the island along with efforts to preserve its natural heritage have no doubt contributed to its slower pace of development than its neighbouring islands but this by no means should be used as an excuse for taking advantage of the opportunities a continuously more globalized world has provided. There are in fact many investment opportunities in Dominica. Since I am involved in information technology as a certified computer technician and run an internet based business I see opportunities to leverage the power of the internet to improve the country’s other industries.
The Nature Island
Dominica is a beautiful country renowned for it’s rainforests, rivers, waterfalls and hot springs. All these natural resources can be and are promoted on the internet. Tourism is one of the main industries on which the country is focussed and there are opportunities to create websites and mobile apps targeted directly at tourists and visitors to the island.
The small population of Dominica is often cited as a hindrance to development. This small population can be a strategic advantage for various projects. All communities are with driving distance of at most a few hours making accessibility to a target audience a easier than in larger countries The internet penetration of over 50% and mobile penetration of over 100% the population is internet savvy and accustomed to using mobile phones. This fact has been identified for ambitious projects such as the island-wide Bit Drop.
Potential in Technology Sector
Information and Communication Technology (ICT) has long been promoted in schools and there are many qualified IT professionals on island and in the diaspora. Integrating this knowledge with other industries could prove very beneficial. The manufacturing and agriculture industry could benefit from using latest technology for both production and marketing activities.
There is no magic solution to developing Dominica or other economies like it. The internet and technology however help even the playing field since the main requirement is knowledge and internet access. Hopefully more investment in this sector will see more jobs and opportunities opening up for such small economies.